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About Us

 
At Counter Culture Coffee, we approach our work with a relentless pursuit of coffee perfection, a dedication to real sustainability, and a commitment to cutting-edge coffee education throughout the coffee chain.

Want to work at Counter Culture? Check out our careers page for current openings.

Quality

Since our founding in 1995, Counter Culture Coffee has represented a different way of bringing coffee to market: sourcing incredible handmade coffees directly from farmers and cooperatives, and roasting so that we bring out their unique flavors.

We want to share these great coffees as the fresh, seasonal fruits that they are. We only sell coffee at the peak of their flavor and freshness, so our selection of coffees grows and changes as we find other coffees to share. Our seasonal selection of single-origin coffees, limited-release offerings, and year-round selections are, to us, the best expression of coffee's diverse traditions and origins.

In addition to our continual search for quality-driven coffee around the world, we engage in quality development at every stage of the coffee chain—from initiatives at origin and brewing experimentation at home to honing in on the best roast and improving the information available to our consumers on our packaging and online. We recognize that freshness is paramount to quality, and we keep as little roasted coffee on hand as possible. We also roast to order and our coffee is roasted, bagged, and shipped on the same day. All this dedication to quality allows us to trade in the real thing: delicious coffees straight from the amazing farms on which they were grown. We proudly identify each coffee with the farm or co-op's real name, never obscuring the origin of coffee with marketing hype. We're passionate about traceability and transparency, but at the end of the day, we measure our success by the flavors of great coffee in your cup.

Sustainability

Sustainability and transparency are core values for us, and these concepts guide every decision me make. We believe that everyone in the coffee supply chain deserves to prosper. To us, though, fairness is just a starting point, and we go far beyond the basics of fairness to create collaborative and personal relationships with our farmer partners. It is this sense of partnership with farmers that forms the basis for our sustainable coffee model. We strive for real environmental, social, and fiscal sustainability in everything we do, and we're proud to work with some of the most progressive and environmentally-sensitive farms in the coffee trade.

Our commitment to sustainability also includes our work here at home—in our roastery and training centers, with our retail partners, and with like-minded organizations with whom we work to serve common causes. In 2008, we launched our third-party certified Counter Culture Direct Trade Certification, which established direct trade standards for sustainability, fairness, quality, and transparency in the coffee chain. Learn more about our ongoing efforts toward sustainability in our Sustainability section.

Education

We are passionate about coffee education, and our mission to create cutting-edge coffee people extends beyond our organization to the relationships with farmers and co-ops, customers, vendors, and local communities. Our approach to coffee education aims to empower everyone in the coffee chain with the skills and knowledge necessary to ensure quality stewardship and sustainability from farm to cup. Since we know that education, quality, and sustainability go hand in hand, we feel a responsibility to share our discoveries and knowledge with the world.

With this in mind, we created our Counter Intelligence coffee education program, an ever-evolving curricula of courses, seminars, and hands-on education labs designed to impart the knowledge and skills required to make the best coffee experiences possible. Our regional training centers—located in Asheville, NC; Atlanta; Boston; Chicago; Durham, NC; New York; Philadelphia; and Washington, DC—serve as classrooms and training labs for Counter Intelligence.

In addition, our weekly public Tasting at Ten events, held every Friday at 10 a.m. in our training centers, represent one of our proudest educational traditions. Our tastings provide coffee lovers of all skill levels the opportunity to experience, compare, and discuss a wide variety of coffees and their fascinating characteristics.